Thursday, July 16, 1970Former KU student Rick “Tiger” Dowdell, 19, is shot and killed by police in downtown Lawrence, sparking a week of protests, vandalism, and confrontations.
Monday, January 31, 1916KU senior Kenneth Pringle returns to Lawrence from his trip to Europe aboard Henry Ford’s “Peace Ship,” an idealistic but ultimately preposterous attempt to end World War I.
Tuesday, November 23, 1999Richard “Dick” Wright, a music professor at KU, KANU radio personality and one of the two founders of KU’s Archive of Recorded Sound, passes away.
Monday, March 8, 1965The KU Civil Rights Council holds a student sit-in in the office of Chancellor W. Clarke Wescoe, the country’s second largest such demonstration to date.
Monday, August 8, 1938Under pressure from civil rights leaders and Kansas Governor Walter Huxman, the Kansas Board of Regents votes to prohibit the de facto practices that had prevented African American students from completing their medical education at the University of Kansas School of Medicine.
Friday, August 21, 1863
Confederate guerrilla leader William Clarke Quantrill perpetrates his infamous Civil War raid on Lawrence, virtually destroying the town and leaving its surviving residents without financial resources to help support the establishment of KU.
Thursday, July 19, 1866
The Board of Regents elects KU’s first three faculty members.
Wednesday, September 8, 1880
The first six students enrolled in KU’s one-year “Preparatory Medical Course” begin classes on Mount Oread.
Saturday, November 7, 1891
Death of the US Cavalry horse Comanche, once considered the sole American survivor of the Battle of Little Big Horn, whose preserved remains are now on display at the KU Museum of Natural History in Dyche Hall.
Monday, May 1, 1893
The Panorama of North American Mammals, a version of which is now located in the University of Kansas Natural History Museum in Dyche Hall, debuts as the centerpiece of the Kansas pavilion at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago.
Friday, April 21, 1905
The University of Kansas Board of Regents authorizes creation of the four-year KU School of Medicine, accomplished by merging the existing two-year School, based in Lawrence, with three Kansas City-area proprietary medical colleges.
Wednesday, September 6, 1905
The new four-year KU School of Medicine begins its first day of classes with a faculty complement that includes several physician-educators with outstanding reputations.
Thursday, December 7, 1905
In KU’s Bailey Hall, chemistry professors Hamilton P. Cady and David F. McFarland discover that helium can be extracted from natural gas.
Friday, May 17, 1907
The Junior Prom becomes the first formal event held in KU’s newly opened Robinson Gymnasium.
Saturday, April 25, 1908
KU journalism students expose a widespread illicit liquor trade in officially "dry" Lawrence when they take over the reins of the Lawrence Daily Journal as part of a one-day experiment in investigative reporting.
Monday, November 8, 1909
Carnegie Foundation researcher Abraham Flexner visits the KU School of Medicine, compiling data and making observations for his influential expose entitled "Medical Education in the United States and Canada."
Thursday, January 13, 1916
As World War I rages in Europe, KU Chancellor Frank Strong publicly opposes the idea of instituting compulsory military training in American universities.
Monday, January 31, 1916
KU senior Kenneth Pringle returns to Lawrence from his trip to Europe aboard Henry Ford’s “Peace Ship,” an idealistic but ultimately preposterous attempt to end World War I.
Wednesday, February 2, 1916
Braving below-freezing temperatures, over 4,000 KU students and local residents gather to see President Woodrow Wilson while his train pauses in Lawrence.
Friday, May 4, 1917
Shortly after the United States formally enters the First World War, KU Chancellor Frank Strong speaks on “Mobilization at the University” before the National Council of Defense in Washington, DC.
Tuesday, October 8, 1918
The worldwide outbreak of influenza, a devastating epidemic known as the “Spanish Flu”, shuts down KU for a month.
Thursday, July 27, 1922
KU alum William Allen White, nationally renowned editor and publisher of the Emporia Gazette, pens his Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial in defense of free speech titled “To An Anxious Friend.”
Wednesday, July 1, 1925
The Kansas Board of Regents votes to accept a $75,000 gift from Elizabeth M. Watkins for the construction of the first KU residence hall for self-supporting women undergraduates.
Friday, April 30, 1926
A ceremony complete with military honor guard marks the laying of the cornerstone of the Kansas Memorial Union building.
Tuesday, September 17, 1929
The Department of Nursing Education at the University of Kansas School of Medicine begins offering a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.
Monday, March 5, 1934
Kansas Representative William H. Blount convenes a hearing in Topeka to investigate racial discrimination at the University of Kansas, with particular focus on the Medical School’s exclusionary practices that prevent African American students from completing medical degrees at KU.
Wednesday, March 20, 1935
The worst “Dust Bowl” dust storm hits Lawrence, shrouding the town and the KU campus in darkness by 2 p.m.
Friday, April 12, 1935
In a vivid display of 1930s-era pacifism, 700 KU students gather in front of Fowler for a Student Strike Against War Committee protest rally, part of a global antiwar demonstration taking place on 140 campuses across the country and around the world.
Sunday, October 3, 1937
The University Daily Kansan reports the death of KU sophomore Don Henry, a volunteer fighting for the Loyalist side in the Spanish Civil War, initiating investigations into radicalism and “communistic activity” at KU and sparking fears of a “Red Scare” on Mt. Oread.
Monday, August 8, 1938
Under pressure from civil rights leaders and Kansas Governor Walter Huxman, the Kansas Board of Regents votes to prohibit the de facto practices that had prevented African American students from completing their medical education at the University of Kansas School of Medicine.
Wednesday, October 16, 1940
The first peacetime draft in American history comes to Mount Oread as KU registers 1,083 men in the Kansas Union.
Friday, April 18, 1941
The KU School of Medicine drops its prohibition against marriage for nursing students.
Wednesday, December 10, 1941
The University Daily Kansan responds to Japan’s bombing of Pearl Harbor with a scathing editorial titled, “An Open Letter to Hirohito.”
Sunday, May 10, 1942
The US Army’s 77th Evacuation Hospital Unit, composed of volunteer doctors and nurses primarily from the KU School of Medicine and its Bell Memorial Hospital, is officially activated for duty in World War II
Sunday, July 8, 1945
The last major contingent of KU nurses and physicians in the US Army’s 77th Evacuation Hospital Unit departs for the States following the end of the Second World War in Europe.
Thursday, April 15, 1948
The KU chapter of the Committee on Racial Equality (CORE) stages a sit-in at Brick’s Cafe in an attempt to force the owner to serve African-Americans.
Friday, February 18, 1949
The “Rural Health Program for Kansas,” a measure conceived by KU School of Medicine Dean Franklin Murphy to provide underserved Sunflower State communities with additional physicians and other medical professionals, is signed into law by Kansas Governor Frank Carlson.
Thursday, March 26, 1959
The University of Kansas gains one of the world’s most impressive Irish political and literary collections when 11 tons of books, pamphlets, periodicals, and other items representing the bulk of Patrick Sarsfield O’Hegarty’s library arrive on Mount Oread.
Thursday, May 21, 1959
KU speech clinician Dick Schiefelbusch presents preliminary research indicating that children with profound mental retardation can learn.
Wednesday, December 16, 1959
The National League for Nursing grants full accreditation to KU's nursing baccalaureate degree program.
Monday, March 8, 1965
The KU Civil Rights Council holds a student sit-in in the office of Chancellor W. Clarke Wescoe, the country’s second largest such demonstration to date.
Wednesday, October 6, 1965
President Lyndon Johnson signs the Regional Medical Program Act into law, enabling the KU Department of Nursing to institute the first continuing education program in its history.
Monday, May 8, 1967
The University of Kansas Graduate School approves establishment of a master’s degree in nursing.
Monday, March 18, 1968
Senator Robert F. Kennedy launches his bid for the Democratic presidential nomination with twin speeches at K-State and KU.
Friday, May 9, 1969
Student anti-war protestors disrupt and ultimately force the cancellation of the Chancellor’s Review of KU’s ROTC department.
Wednesday, April 8, 1970
Hippie activist Abbie Hoffman speaks at KU’s Allen Field House.
Monday, April 20, 1970
A firebomb blasts the Kansas Union, causing nearly $1 million in damages.
Thursday, July 16, 1970
Former KU student Rick “Tiger” Dowdell, 19, is shot and killed by police in downtown Lawrence, sparking a week of protests, vandalism, and confrontations.
Friday, December 11, 1970
Three KU students are injured when a bomb tears through the University’s Computation Center.
Friday, September 17, 1971
The Kansas Board of Regents approves establishment of a clinical training campus of the KU School of Medicine in Wichita.
Thursday, November 18, 1971
Responding to campus radicalism and slashed state education budgets, a KU group called Students Concerned About Higher Education in Kansas publishes a bold advertisement that asks “WOULD YOU VOTE TO ABOLISH THE UNIVERSITY?”
Friday, February 4, 1972
A women’s advocacy group calling themselves the February Sisters occupy the East Asian Studies building in an effort to win concessions from the University.
Monday, April 1, 1974
The School of Nursing is established as a co-equal academic unit of the KU Medical Center
Wednesday, October 12, 1983
Over 2,000 students and local residents pack KU’s Woodruff Auditorium for a special screening of The Day After, ABC’s controversial TV-movie filmed in Lawrence that depicts the effects of a nuclear holocaust on a typical American town.
Tuesday, July 1, 1986
The Spencer Research Library's African American Experience Collection gets its real beginning as a federal grant enables the library to assemble the often overlooked documentary record left behind by Kansas’ African American population in a more focused fashion than ever before.
Saturday, June 15, 1991
Lightning strikes Hoch Auditorium, causing a fire that reduces the 64-year-old campus landmark to ruins in less than four hours.
Thursday, October 17, 1991
Grunge rock group Nirvana appears in the Kansas Union Ballroom to promote the group's best-selling album "Nevermind", released just 20 days earlier. By January the album had reached number one on the Billboard charts, eventually selling over 30 million copies worldwide.
Thursday, December 3, 1992
KU dedicates the new Regents Center, the first building on the University’s Edwards Campus in Johnson County.
Tuesday, August 5, 1997
KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway adds the final touches to the University’s campus plan.
Tuesday, November 23, 1999
Richard “Dick” Wright, a music professor at KU, KANU radio personality and one of the two founders of KU’s Archive of Recorded Sound, passes away.
Friday, November 4, 2005
The Kenneth Spencer Research Library marks the fortieth anniversary of the founding of the Wilcox Collection of Contemporary Political Movements, which takes as its mission the preservation of materials from America's radical political fringe.
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times